[OT] Advice needed: international transaction
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 5:27 pm 
 

I'm currently trying to sort out an international transaction, and I'm hoping that one or more Acaeum folks might help me to become "un-stuck."

The scenario: I have a buyer in Italy who owes me $450. This is our second transaction; the first (a few months ago) went seamlessly through PayPal ... however, I just received a message from the buyer claiming that "PayPal is no longer an option for him."

The problem: My bank (a credit union, actually) seems very hesitant to approve any sort of wire transfer (and the fees are ridiculous, anyway). They are basically making it as difficult as possible.

The question: Do I have other options? Would a check drawn against a legitimate Italian bank mean anything to my credit union? Or, is there such a thing as an "international money order" (or does it exist only in my head?) Does American Express perhaps provide a service that would be recognized in both Italy and the U.S.?

I'm really at a loss. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance.

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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 5:41 pm 
 

How about Western Union?  I know that Bidpay is now essentially defunct, but couldn't they just stop at a Western Union office in Italy?  I am pretty sure that there are Western Unions across the world.


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 5:43 pm 
 

Other than that you could see if someone could act as a mediary(sp?) for you that could receive the payment and then Paypal you the money themselves.


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 5:45 pm 
 

There is always cash!  Prior to Paypal I used cash a few times.  Never went missing but always nervous about it.


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 6:01 pm 
 

A. He can use his credit card on the Western Union website to set up a payment for you. He will be given a transaction number, and you will need that transaction number and a photo ID to collect the funds from a Western Union outlet neer you. He will receive a confirmation e-mail when you collect the funds.

B. You could get him to send you a bankers draft from his bank in US dollars. He will have to go to his bank and pay them for a cheque made payable to you in US dollars. You will have to deposit this into your bank and wait for it to clear.

C. You could get him to post you a jiffy bag with Euro notes in it. There must be no coins as they show up on scanners, and it would be bast to wrap them in cardboard to make it look like a package. He could ship it to you recorded and with tracking.

Each of these options costs him money and time. As any of the US sellers here will tell you, Italy is one of those places you may want to stop selling to. Things go missing in the post in Italy, too, and the italian postal service is not accountable for any tracking or missing items.

If you have the option, you may consider agreeing not to complete and relisting your items. Claim your fees back of eBay as the buyer is unable to complete the transaction.


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 8:39 pm 
 

Did you offer other options besides Paypal?
If your credit union won't take an Italian check, use the check to open another account at a different bank, then close the account after the check clears.
Paypal does indeed suck ass, but it has occasional uses. Ian is dead on, Italy is probably not going to be an option in my future buying and selling. Unfortunate for the Italian buyers/sellers, but that is how it goes.


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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 8:50 pm 
 

In Italy we have a payment form called "bonifico". Fees depend from bank to bank,mine charges nothing for a national one and €2 for an international one. You have to get some specific codes from the destination bank (for an Italian transaction, the codes needed are ABI and CAB, for an international one there are different codes but I don't know them). Some Italian banks also allow to make a bonifico from the Internet, without physically going to the bank. Of course, a bank won't emit a bonifico (differently from a cheque) if the credit is not available, so it is considered a very safe transaction.

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Post Posted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 9:04 pm 
 

Great ideas so far — thanks, everyone.

Just to be clear, I'm not trying to bash the guy, or Italy, or the Italian people. It just so happens that this individual is from Italy; I'd probably be in the same situation if it was a guy from France, Spain, Austria, or whatever. It's actually my credit union that's being the big pain in my a**.

Anyway, thanks again.

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Post Posted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 12:52 am 
 

Xaxaxe,

I think that Western Union is by far the easiest option.  There are probably any number of places nearby you  can pick it up (gas stations, grocery stores, etc.)

Give the buyer your name, address, phone number, etc.  Make sure to get all that info from the buyer as well as the "transaction ID" or whatever.  After  they post they Western Union payment, just go and fill out the form - they will find the payment and print you out a money order.


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Post Posted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:09 am 
 

I've sent money via Western Union a number of times (through necessity).

Although for me it's worked out more expensive on the higher prices items than other options like overseas draft, Paypal etc  the funds have generally been available at the other end within 20 minutes (so I've been told at the W/Union office).

  


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Post Posted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:49 am 
 

I'm going to put my 2 cents in for Wesern Union- I used it for orders to the Philippines....a totally haywire place when it comes to mail but I never had any troubles.


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Post Posted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 3:03 am 
 

tell him to give transfer the $$ into someone else bank a/c in italy and then that person paypal the $$ to you, there are several people here from italy that might do that for you.. of course you need to trust em with your $$ for a while but i have done that lots of times...

Brette:)

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Post Posted: Sat May 06, 2006 4:16 am 
 

* bump *

I know you've all been waiting on the edge of your seats ... :) ... so I thought I'd check in to say that the Western Union idea worked perfectly.

I picked up the money earlier today at a local casino (and bought a big ol' Tecate for $1, too, to help celebrate Cinco de Mayo!). No fees or anything, either, which is a feature PayPal cannot match.

Anyway, thanks again for the advice; I really thought this deal was dead in the water when I made the original post.

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